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Large numbers of foreign companies are exploring the possibilities of establishing Vietnamese ventures. Some 1,000 Japanese businessmen visit Vietnam each month.
The Vietnamese Government is keen to find foreign partners for some at least of its 12,000 state enterprises.
Many are antiquated and debt ridden, but possibly a third are operating reasonably well as quasi-private businesses and some of these will in due course be offered for privatisation (or "equitisation" as the process is euphemistically called), though an experimental offer of privatisation with seven companies in recent months failed to get off the ground.
The State Committee for Co-operation and Investment publishes an annual list of investment projects. These are largely reproduced, and expanded, in more detailed lists produced by local People's Committees, notably in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, and the Vietnamese Chamber of Commerce and Industry and individual Ministries.
The Vietnamese authorities are however very willing to listen to all serious investment proposals, whether specifically included in one of the official lists or not.
The more popular sectors for investment by overseas entrepreneurs include food processing, textiles, garments, light engineering, hotels and property development. Mining prospects are also especially attractive, both for dimension stone (granite and marble) and a whole range of mineral deposits and semiprecious metals, as well as precious stones.